U.S. 24 is a Construction Area: ODOT
LIMA – It may be a wide-open, tempting area for snowmobilers, but the new U.S. 24 in Paulding and Defiance
counties is off limits until the highway is opened to traffic.
“New U.S. 24 is a construction area and is not a public roadway. It is against the law for anyone not associated with the project to be on the property,” said Tim Burkepile, Ohio Department of Transportation District 1 deputy director.
With the recent snowfalls, project personnel have noticed an increase in snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles running throughout the construction site. “We currently have a fencing contractor working on the U.S. 24 project. They are installing barbed wire fencing which is easily camouflaged in the snow. Not only is it illegal to be on the project, it is also dangerous,” said Burkepile.
Construction materials are stored throughout the project and there are also many excavated areas filled with water. “The snow hides these dangers from snowmobiles or ATVs on the closed right-of-way,” said Burkepile.
Ohio Revised Code 4511.71 states: “No person shall drive upon, along, or across a street or highway, or any part of a street or highway that has been closed in the process of its construction, reconstruction, or repair, and posted with appropriate signs by the authority having jurisdiction to close such highway.”
Signs stating that the highway is closed are posted throughout the U.S. 24 project area, he said.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rhonda Pees, ODOT District 1, 419-999-6803